Maria Clara Escobar and Felipe Sholl) and directed by Júlia Murat, (shown at right) tells the simple and slow-moving story of a backwater Brazilian town, located in the verdant region of the Paraíba Valley. Formerly somewhat grand but now fallen into disrepair and populated by a few remaining senior citizens and the town's priest -- each of whom apparently has a daily task to accomplish for the good of the small community -- the town of Jotuomba could almost be seen as what lies in store for another small community, whose story was finely told in the recent documentary Tales from Dell City, TX.
Dia dos pais). This is a narrative film, with the town and its characters created from the imagination but given such specifics (along with rapturously lovely cinematography by Lisandro Alonso's usual cameraman, Lucio Bonelli) that they live and breathe and catch us up in their lives -- despite (maybe even because of) how slowly things move here. This is part of the town's and of the movie's charm. You'll either go with it or quickly give up.
Luiz Serra), who runs the town's empty coffee house and calls Madelena a "stubborn old lady" because she insists on placing the bread her way in his shop, after which he re-does it to his own specifications. ("OK, OK. So when," I hear you youngsters asking, "comes the first car chase/car crash?")
Lisa Fávero, above), a photographer perhaps on vacation (or escaping from a bad relationship) who needs a hotel (there is none) and so persuades Madelena to let her stay with her for a few days. These soon become a week, and a guarded relationship (between Rita and Madelena and between Rita and the town and its inhabitants) slowly blossoms into something more.
Film Movement, opens tomorrow -- Friday, June 1 -- in New York City at the Lincoln Plaza Cinema. The only other playdate currently scheduled can be found here. Once the movie opens in Manhattan and does some decent box-office, however, who knows?